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How to safely split paddock in half - NEW QUESTIONS POST 10

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  • How to safely split paddock in half - NEW QUESTIONS POST 10

    I'm currently horse shopping and assuming that I bring another horse home, I'll need to figure out how to divide my current 35x100' sacrifice paddock into 2 paddocks. This is, of course, complicated by the fact that the orientation of the barn to the pasture isn't optimal (we didn't build).

    I'm pretty sure that the dimensions work out well to divide it in 2 using metal panels, but I can't figure out how to secure next to the barn and next to the existing fence (I won't hit an existing fence post when I hit the fence). We'd like whatever we do to be fairly temporary as we would anticipate removing it in the next couple of years if/when we get back down to 1 horse or everyone proves capable of getting along.

    Here's an aerial image of the barn / gravel paddock, surround sheds, and alley out to pasture (top end of gravel area). It's a pole-barn with metal siding.


    I've drawn in what I think works best. Giving the front two stalls (1 QH and the mini-mule) an L-shaped paddock and the back stall a rectangular one. It would preserve the ability to drive a truck/tractor out to the pasture and mean that the gate to either paddock could be open to alternate access to the pasture. In the drawing the green line is where I anticipate installing panels within the existing fence lines.


    But how do I secure the two ends??? Can I set an 8' t-post (capped of course) at either end and secure to that? Or do I need to set wood posts? Do I angle the long side slightly so I can secure to a wood post on the far top/left end and use a t-post up against the barn?

    Advice? Ideas?
    Last edited by UrbanHennery; May. 19, 2013, 06:04 PM.

  • #2
    I do not see why you could not use a capped metal post to secure to.


    • #3
      Why don't you use electric tape and step in poles? Easy, removable.... and perhaps safer than a series of panels linked together....


      • #4
        To connect panels to our barn, we used two huge eye hooks (in place of the "v" on opposite panel) and slid the pin through: top eye hook, gate, bottom eye hook. If you are using the opposite end of the panel you need four eye hooks (2 for each panel pin slot). Happy to take pics for you tomorrow. I think you could do the same thing at the fence connection and maybe also use a post for extra strength. Let me know if you'd like pics.

        PS- I think your proposed setup looks great!

        Editing: not sure if it was clear that we screwed the eye hooks into the barn
        "No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle" - Winston Churchill

        Check out Central Virginia Horse Rescue


        • Original Poster

          OTTBcooper - pics would be great! I'm not sure that I can screw directly into the barn (there's no structural post right where we'd be connecting) but I'm not opposed to sinking a post in concrete there. If we ever pull out the panels it could be used for scratching...

          Lorilu - I could use tape and posts, but somehow panels feels safer to me. I hate tape even though I've used it for cross fencing and such. Also, I'd probably need to add another charger as I think my current one is pretty maxed out.

          Nashfad - yeah, part of me thinks the metal posts would be fine. Especially if we used the super heavy duty ones. Might be worth trying and then deciding since I've already got some t-posts I could use. Worst case we move the panels and sink a wood post.


          • #6
            I had to put up some temporary fencing this past summer when we removed all the old fences and put in chain link. We used the 16' cattle panels, and t-posts. Posts were driven in every 8 feet to provide extra support, as the panels do tend to 'wow' a bit. Just wired them on. Was an inexpensive (panels just happened to come on sale at TSC when we needed them) and easy way to put up a fence.
            What you allow is what will continue.


            • #7
              As others have said, capped t-posts work fine. We secured ours with strong, thick baling twine (not small bale twine, but the really heavy stuff they use to hold together 21 small bales into mega-bales). Works great and is easy to manage.
              Here Be Dragons: My blog about venturing beyond the lower levels as a dressage amateur.


              • Original Poster

                eponacelt - that's so good to know! Now to figure out how to deal with the slight slope away from the barn. Great for drainage, hard for leveling anything...


                • #9
                  OP here are a few pics of how we secured each "end" - I like the idea of the capped t-posts between each of the free standing connections!


                  Shot of both connectors against the barn
                  "No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle" - Winston Churchill

                  Check out Central Virginia Horse Rescue


                  • Original Poster

                    I was able to put this project off by leasing out my trail horse for a couple of months. Unfortunately my lessee lost her job and so he's coming home next weekend.

                    Panels are just proving complicated - for a lot of reasons I don't feel like typing out.

                    Soooo, can I do the same layout using electric? I've already got a charger that keeps our EquiFence and cross-fencing at 8,000 volts. With a little effort I can dig a trench to connect the new fence to the existing.

                    Everyone out there is really respectful of hot fences. I'm thinking of using either 1-1/2 tape or poly rope (preferred) and making the paddocks I drew in Post 1.

                    I've been to a lot of barns around here that have similar layouts done with 1/2" tape, and obviously it's working for them... Concerns I should be aware of?

                    If this is feasible, can I use capped t-posts for the whole thing? Or do I really have to set wood posts for the ends / corner? I'd prefer to keep it all easily removed, but I suppose that setting the posts in gravel wouldn't be that much work.


                    • #11
                      Reading your original post, I was thinking e-fence would be the way to go over the panels.
                      They say you should have concrete-set wooden posts as end/corners, but I've gotten away without it. The only trick is that the "end tensioners" I have are built to be screwed into wood, not t-posts. So I've had to get creative in using the t-post thingies as end-tensioners. The way I see it, if they do any more than briefly touch it, the hot tape isn't going to hold anyway. And it's not like you're using it for perimeter fencing.

                      My only concern is some horses (like mine) have such respect for hot wire/tape that 18'/16' might be a tight enough squeeze to make them nervous. If you want super-easy, you can get those cheap plastic "posts" for the e-fence. We used those all the time to move my horses around to graze in different spots when I was a kid.


                      • Original Poster

                        I think these guys will be okay in the space - they graze right up against the perimeter fence and stand against it in the current paddock. I guess if it doesn't work I can always re-evaluate.

                        Yeah, I've already done some "creative" tensioner building on t-posts for my cross-fencing under the same theory. I guess I'll have to hit the farm store tomorrow and start figuring it out.


                        • #13
                          I have some subdivision fences that keep the horses out of the berry vines and we use two el cheapo TSC tapes on step ins, and big alligator clips to fasten to the hot EB (and a chunk of pool liner to hold the clips with, the plastic is a joke). The Eb people actually advertise that you can extend fencelines simply by mating a new strand to a charged strand at any point, although putting a t-post close by gives support.

                          I've taken the spring gate handles and just hung it on the wire electric fence we use on the pig enclosure too. I wouldn't be doing that for a true exterior fence or if I thought we'd have horse interaction problems., it's very "permorary".

                          We have rock problems here so wood posts are really hard to set and we use t-posts for end posts by bracing them, takes three posts like this |\| and hardware you can get at TSC. If you don't brace they can be bent over if you use them as ending points.

                          We put them in the ground and yank them out all the time, I sure wish we had nice wooden permanent posts but we haven't got a rock drill.
                          Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                          Incredible Invisible


                          • Original Poster

                            When you make the braces with t-posts, do you have to cut off the "fin" that normally goes underground? Or is it just turned so its out of the way?


                            • #15
                              DH leaves them, turned so they are out of the way. Not 100% safe.
                              Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                              Incredible Invisible


                              • #16
                                Our sacrifice lots are constructed with metal panels that use chains to link together rather than pins.

                                I drove a 6 or 7-foot T-Post on the "outside" side of the perimeter...one between every-other panel joint. I used the chains to link the panels together around the T-Posts.

                                I didn't use caps because the posts are on the outside of the lot, but there is no reason you couldn't use the same method for your dividing.

                                Toughest part about using panels is your land needs to be rather flat, or you'll have trouble getting the panels to line up evenly.


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by UrbanHennery View Post
                                  When you make the braces with t-posts, do you have to cut off the "fin" that normally goes underground? Or is it just turned so its out of the way?
                                  Don't you have to sink the tpost into the ground below the fin for maximum stability? That's what we've done...


                                  • #18
                                    I used eye bolts and ground rods like for an electric fence and pounded them into the ground this gave a nice secure connection. I also used the ground rods on my connections to keep panels secure. I have a horse that is hard on panels so far I have not problems.
                                    Last edited by DebraO; Aug. 25, 2013, 12:15 PM. Reason: add more


                                    • #19
                                      gate dividing paddocks

                                      I need a stall guard that is 6 feet wide to divide my paddocks at night. My horse paws the gate until it will not even open, I have tried no climb wire across with not luck. I was thinking a stall guard. Does anyone have Ideas?


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by DebraO View Post
                                        I need a stall guard that is 6 feet wide to divide my paddocks at night. My horse paws the gate until it will not even open, I have tried no climb wire across with not luck. I was thinking a stall guard. Does anyone have Ideas?
                                        My dad made for me long ago a slip bar gate. He took two chunks of rebar, bent them into a [, drilled holes and drove them into the two uprights on either side of the gate at about 3 and a half feet, lining them up so that a 2X4 would go into both of them and stay level. There were originally two at two heights but two were a pain and we had no ponies so one worked. We had to make a secure closure as my horse would fuss with the end of the 2X and eventually work it so it fell down and she could walk over. He drove a staple with a big washer/ring hanging from it into the bottom of one side of the 2x near the end, and fastened a hook on a chain to the fencepost, or a snap would work but a hook never freezes shut, and the hook on the fencepost went into the washer on the bar, the chain was just short enough that the bar wouldn't fall out. We had also made one where we used horseshoes to support the bar but they weren't quite big or sturdy enough.

                                        They don't clear the opening all the way without a bit of work but if you push the 2x aside about 2 feet and drop it on the ground it functions fine.
                                        Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                                        Incredible Invisible